A A A Text size
ME/CFS essay competition winners announced

ME/CFS essay competition winners announced

May 16, 2024

Essays on ME/CFS by medical students at universities in Edinburgh, Dundee and St Andrews have been selected as the winning entries in the 2024 Learn about ME essay competition in Scotland, funded by the Scottish Government.

Learn about ME partners Action for M.E., ME Action Scotland, ME Association and Dr Nina Muirhead are delighted to award the first prize of £250 to Bhanu Wahi-Singh, a fifth year medical student at The University of Edinburgh. Dr Miurhead explains:

“We were looking for entries that offered real insight into what doctors should consider when supporting a patient who may have ME/CFS, with reference to its impact on their quality of life and level of functioning, and emerging biomedical evidence on post-viral illnesses. Thank you to all the students that entered and in doing so learnt more about how they can support people with ME/CFS as they progress in their medical career.”

All entrants were required to access and complete Learna’s free CPD training module on ME/CFS, developed by Dr Muirhead, before submitting 500 words on the topic: What is your most important learning point about ME/CFS?

Bhanu’s essay will be published in Journal of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh in June, introduced by an editorial from Dr Muirhead highlighting the urgent need for early and accurate diagnosis, medication for symptom control, kindness, compassion and belief for people with ME/CFS.

Mairi Paterson at University of Dundee and Lucy Anderson, first year medical student at University of St Andrews took second and third place respectively.

Nearly 30 students entered this inaugural medical student essay competition, part of the Learn about ME project funded by the Scottish Government to inform professional practice.

First prize winner Bhanu is passionate about the interface between clinical work and research. Clinically interest in Psychiatry and academically inclined towards epidemiological research, Bhanu has most recently co-authored an article in The Lancet. He says:

Bhanu says: “Through personal and professional interactions with people impacted by chronic disease states such as ME/CFS, I have been inspired by the immense impact of research and education of both the public and clinicians about these illnesses, and I’m grateful for the wonderful work done by the Learn about ME project.”

All the Learn about ME project partners are enormously grateful to the judging panel:

  • volunteers with lived experience of ME/CFS
  • Dr Muirhead, creator of Learna’s free CPD training module on ME/CFS
  • Dr Graeme P Currie, Consultant Respiratory Physician, Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and Editor-in Chief of Journal of Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
  • Dr Shaun Peter Qureshi, Lecturer in Medical Education, University of Dundee, and Churchill Fellow.

First, second and third prize essays will be shared by Learn about ME project partners Action for M.E., the ME Association and #MEAction Scotland online and/or in our membership magazines, in due course.

You can use our template letter to highlight the learning module to your GP or other health professional, along with accompanying Learn about ME podcasts on topics including Long Covid, paediatrics and physiotherapy.